Osmeña hits Rama on replacement of MCWD officials

By: Rashe Zoe Sophia Piquero - Multimedia Reporter - CDN Digital | November 09,2023 - 03:56 PM

Former Mayor Tomas "Tommy" Osmeña

Former Mayor Tomas “Tommy” Osmeña. | CDN Digital file photo

CEBU CITY, Philippines — Former Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña has something to say about the controversies surrounding the Metropolitan Cebu Water District (MCWD).

In a written statement released on Thursday, Nov. 9, Osmeña said that Mayor Michael Rama’s decision to replace Lawyer Jose Daluz III as chairman of the board of MCWD and two of its board of directors was for “capricious reasons.”

“On the MCWD management crisis, the people should realize that there is only one law of the land and that is the law of Mike Rama. That is why he is the only suspended mayor in the history of Cebu City – twice pa!” Osmeña said in his statement.

“We all know that even the President cannot fire his own appointed judges for any reason. But Rama can fire the MCWD directors for capricious reasons like ‘loss of trust and confidence.’ Translate to ‘I simply don’t like you. You are fired.’ You see, Rama’s Law is absolute. He even once commanded his barangay captains to roll on the floor (ligid-ligid). And they dutifully obeyed! I’m proud of that. Heil Rama!” Osmeña added.

Last October 31, Rama appointed Melquiades Feliciano as the new MCWD chairman and Aristotle Batuhan and Nelson Yuvallos as members of the board of directors.

They replaced Daluz, Miguelito Pato, and Jodelyn Seno who were removed from office due to graft and corruption allegations.

In an earlier interview, Daluz said that the appointment of the new MCWD directors was “unlawful” because it did not follow the procedures stipulated by the law.

In a letter dated October 17 from the Local Water Utilities Administration (LWUA), which was received by the MCWD office on November 6, the government agency clarified its stance on the request of the city government on the issuance of a certificate of no objection on the appointment of new MCWD directors.

According to LWUA, local executive lack the authority to remove the chairperson and members of the board of directors of MCWD.

However, Lawyer Jerone Castillo, former Cebu City legal counsel and the current budget officer, said that the letter from LWUA has “no legal weight” since it was only signed by its administrator.

Castillo questioned the legality of the letter as it was not issued by the chairperson of LWUA, to whom he had initially addressed his letter request on August 17.

But Daluz said that he will continue to consider himself as the current chairman of the MCWD board of directors and carry out his supposed duties to serve the Cebuanos.


MCWD board row: Late Mayor Labella’s termination of directors questioned

LWUA claims Rama has no authority to remove MCWD directors

Replacement of Daluz as MCWD chair was ‘legal and valid’

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TAGS: Jose Daluz III, MCWD, Michael Rama, Tomas Osmeña

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